Limerick Rugby
Don't Miss

Frank previews the clash with the All Blacks

By Frank Quinn
THE 34-man Ireland squad named this week for the fixture against New Zealand on Saturday, 5th November in Chicago makes interesting reading..
They will gather in Carton House tomorrow and the team departs Dublin for Chicago on Monday 31st. There are 6 uncapped players named among the 34 man squad: Joey Carbery, Billy Holland, Luke McGrath, Garry Ringrose, John Ryan and James Tracy.
Of those, Munster second-row Billy Holland is in with a good chance of inclusion after some outstanding performances in the red jersey this season while Leinster’s Ringrose also looks like getting a seat on the plane.
The loss of Mike Ross and Keith Earls and the fact that Jonathan Sexton and Sean O’Brien had only limited match time after returning from injuries cannot be overlooked. Tests against the RWC champions with 18 consecutive wins behind them remains an awesome challenge and no place for the ‘learners’ or ‘almost fully fit guys.’
My starters in the pack would be McGrath, Best, Furlong; Toner, Henderson and three from Stander/Heaslip, Van der Flier, O’Mahony. Murray a cert at nine with either Sexton or Jackson and a back five of Trimble, Henshaw, Marshal, Gilroy and Payne (all barring injuries). Replacements, Cronin, Healy, Bealham, Dillane, J Murphy, Zebo, Marmion/McGrath, Jackson/Sexton.
Reps: Cronin, Healy, Bealham, Dillane, Mujrphy,,Zebo for back 3, Marmion/McGrath for 9, Jackson (JS start),
The alternative is to put Payne at 13 and Rob Kearney at 15, which solves the centre problem!
Of the 34 named, Leinster have 16, Munster 8, Ulster 7 and Connacht 3.
According to Joe Schmidt,”With more than half the squad likely to be involved in Pro12 action this weekend, plus the need to factor in the travel and fatigue from the Chicago fixture, there are also a number of players on standby who are likely to be involved during the first two weeks of the Guinness Series.”
Ireland Squad for New Zealand (Chicago)
Finlay Bealham (Buccaneers/Connacht)
Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster) captain
Joey Carbery (Clontarf/Leinster)*
Sean Cronin (St Marys/Leinster)
Ultan Dillane (Corinthians/Connacht)
Keith Earls (Young Munster/Munster)
Tadgh Furlong (Clontarf/Leinster)
Craig Gilroy (Ulster)
Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster)
Jamie Heaslip (Dublin University/Leinster) vice captain
Iain Henderson (Ballynahinch/Ulster)
Robbie Henshaw (Leinster)
Billy Holland (Cork Constitution/Munster)*
Paddy Jackson (Dungannon/Ulster)
Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster)
Kieran Marmion (Buccaneers/Connacht)
Luke Marshall (Ulster)
Jack McGrath (St Marys/Leinster)
Luke McGrath (UCD/Leinster)*
Jordi Murphy (Lansdowne/Leinster)
Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster)
Sean O’Brien (UCD/Leinster)
Peter O’Mahony (Cork Constitution/Munster)
Jared Payne (Ulster)
Garry Ringrose (UCD/Leinster)*
Donnacha Ryan (Shannon/Munster)
John Ryan (Cork Constitution/Munster)*
Jonathan Sexton (St Marys/Leinster)
CJ Stander (Munster)
Devin Toner (Lansdowne/Leinster)
James Tracy (UCD/Leinster)*
Andrew Trimble (Ballymena/Ulster)
Josh van der Flier (UCD/Leinster)
Simon Zebo (Cork Constitution/Munster)

*denotes uncapped player

You must be logged in to post a comment Login